Semantical Gymnastics, Logical Idiocy

Books, Management, Media, Paul Lebowitz's 2011 Baseball Guide, Players, Spring Training

This is from MLB Trade Rumors regarding the Angels:

The Angels fired scouting director Eddie Bane last fall, a decision that ESPN’s Keith Law criticized in an e-mail to Mark Saxon of ESPNLosAngeles.com.  Law thought Bane’s firing “smacked of internal politics, and furthered Tony Reagins’ reputation in the game as a difficult person to work for and someone who only values opinions that match his own.”

I have no clue about Reagins’s reputation in the industry, nor do I understand how a club can go from being ranked 22nd (as the linked ESPNLosAngeles piece says) and jump to 6th in one year. Did the rest of baseball decline? Did the Angels have that strong a draft? And the Angels surrendered some serious young talent to get Dan Haren.

I find it laughable how opinions change based on a smidgen of elapsed time and after one decision that may have been made for a multitude of reasons other than Law’s proclamation that Reagins wants yes-men.

Reagins didn’t abide Bane disagreeing with him? That’s it?

Bane was with the Angels from 2004-2010; Reagins has been the GM of the club since October of 2007—he decided after three years that he didn’t want Bane around anymore? They didn’t butt heads prior to the unsubstantiated Law assertion that it was all due to Reagins’s intransigence?

All you need to do is look in the manager’s office—in the vein of Law’s leaps of illogic and innuendo—to disprove the “yes-man” theory.

Is Mike Scioscia going to allow the GM to push him around? Will he stand by and let the GM exert his will and hesitate to disagree for fear of suffering the fate of Bane? Armed with a track record of annual success and—most importantly—a contract through 2018, Scioscia’s going nowhere.

Much of what made Scioscia a standout defensive catcher was his willingness to get dirty and block the plate—it was his forte and he had the massive collisions to prove it. (The most memorable was the 1985  crash with Cardinals slugger Jack Clark that left both men senseless. Scioscia held onto the ball despite being knocked cold.)

If Scioscia were ever on the market to manage elsewhere, he’d be jobless for about the length of time it takes for a successful bull-riding event in a rodeo—8 seconds; and it’s not because he’s the best strategic manager in baseball—he’s not—but because he has control of the clubhouse and is a respected, stable, calm, strong voice.

And what if Reagins did disagree with Bane and the other scouts who were dismissed. So what? Why was it okay for then-Dodgers GM Paul DePodesta to fire Jim Tracy, one of the game’s best managers, because he wanted “someone on the same page” and it wouldn’t be a similar scenario for Reagins?

If Law has evidence that Reagins’s decision to fire Bane was a personality clash and nothing else, he should present it rather than making these groundless assertions to bolster his own shaky credentials as a scout/expert/insider.

I published a full excerpt of my book 9 days ago here.

The book is available now. Click here to get it in paperback or E-Book on I-Universe or on Amazon or BN. It’s also available via E-book on Borders.com.

Now it’s also out on Amazon Kindle and Barnes and Noble Nook.


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